– According to a number of sources, the Islanders are going to take F John Tavares with the No. 1 pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. The Lightning are then expected to take D Victor Hedman.
– The Flyers and Panthers have had discussions regarding a sign-and-trade for D Jay Bouwmeester. Philly would acquire the rights to J-Bo for F Joffrey Lupul, but only until July 1. From there, the Flyers would have exclusive negotiating rights to try and re-sign the blueliner before he hits the open market next Wednesday. Lupul had 25 goals and 25 assists last year, but the Flyers are deep at forward and need to dump salary to make room for the $6M or more annually it would take to ink Bouwmeester. Lupul has four more years under contract at $4.25M per year.
– The Oilers have only had “brief” discussions with free agent-to-be G Dwayne Roloson and F Ales Kotalik. The Oilers need a goalie, but are hesitant to lock themselves into a multi-year contract with a netminder who’ll be 40 next season. Roloson, meanwhile, had a great 2008-09 campaign and feels he’s worth a two- or three-year pact.
– The Knicks have extended qualifying offers to F David Lee ($2.7M) and G Nate Robinson ($2.5M), making them RFAs come July 1. The Knicks now have the right to match any offer that Lee or Robinson receives after hitting the market on July 1, thus keeping them. Had the Knicks not made the qualifying offers by the end of this month, Lee and Robinson would have become UFAs. If they do not sign with another team, or come to terms with the Knicks, they can accept the qualifying offers and become UFAs next summer.
– The C’s have shot down rumours of shopping G Rajon Rondo.
– The Bobcats will not offer F Sean May a contract. Rightfully so, since he’s had knee and weight issues for four years.
– The Rangers will not offer RHP Pedro Martinez a contract, as he is asking for too much ($5M).
– The Reds have shot down rumours of shopping RHP Bronson Arroyo. The team is believed to be looking for a hitter, though.
– Along with the Reds, the White Sox will be buyers by July 31.
– The Giants are shopping for a middle-of-the-order bat.
– The Rangers continue to shop for a bullpen arm.
– According to ESPN, Indians’ GM Mark Shapiro is expected to discuss manager Eric Wedge’s status with president Paul Dolan and team owner Larry Dolan “in the next few days.”
As you’ve heard, Wedge is in serious danger of losing his job. The Indians, 30-42 as of Tuesday night, are stuck in last place in the American League Central and have seen a major drop in attendance this season. Wedge is in his seventh season with the club and is signed through 2010. Look for some kind of announcement by the weekend. Wedge has a 526-518 managerial record with the Tribe. He led them to the ALCS in 2007.
– According to the NY Post, the Phillies and Rockies had discussed a deal that would see the Rockies acquire LHP JA Happ for RHP Jason Marquis and OF Ryan Spillborghs. Although the deal is no longer on the table, the Rockies are still searching for a veteran reliever.
– The Pirates are interested in RHP Luis Ayala. Ayala will make $1.3M this year.